Executive pay: ratio wrangle

©Jim Winslet

In a multinational corporate world it’s all relative

AUSTIN, TX - MARCH 16: General atmosphere at the kick-off of SoulCycle at the Spotify House during SXSW 2015 on March 16, 2015 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Alli Harvey/Getty Images for Spotify)

SoulCycle: reinventing the wheel

Physical and emotional wellbeing are yours for $34 a session

European carmakers: hot hatches

Investors look under the bonnet for the best growth engines

Lloyds Banking Group: horse play

UK government’s public offer plan seems a costly folly

Procter & Gamble: play it as it lies

Just hit the ball and run backwards

Nokia Alcatel: Groomzilla

The wedding plans are going well, so far

Royal Dutch Shell: the hard bit

The oil group has had to make a tough decision and give some proper cost targets

Royal Bank of Scotland: step by step

The bank is on the road to recovery, but it is a long road

Nintendo: get splatting

The real earnings bonus will be a successful launch on smartphones

Facebook: peerless network

Costs are growing but so are new revenue opportunities

  • No, Amazon is not more “valuable” than Wal-Mart

    Here are some breathless headlines from various news outlets on Thursday night:

  • Apple: set your Watches for January

    The market seems to have moved from last night’s unseemly panic to a state of resigned disappointment. Apples’s shares were briefly down 8 per cent in the late trading Tuesday, after it released its June quarter earnings report. On Wednesday afternoon the shares closed down just 4 per cent.

  • Swatch: from bulls to bearers (and back)

    Swatch's bearer shares once traded at an 18 per cent premium to its registered shares. Having fallen for two years, the premium may be about to widen again

  • Lipstick on the collar

    We’ve talked about equity collars before in stock-for-stock M&A transactions. The idea is that the selling shareholders who are worried about downwards movements in the stock price of the acquiror, get an upward adjustment in the exchange ratio if the acquiror’s stock price falls. Such collars are typically symmetrical so if the acquiror’s stock price rises, the exchange ratio is then adjusted downward.

    The Coty/P&G Beauty brands combination from last week provides a rare example of a collar on debt. Coty is combining with the P&G businesses in a so-called Reverse Morris Trust. P&G will separate the unit and then combine it with Coty so that P&G shareholders will own 52 per cent of the new Coty. That proportion is crucial. Because P&G shareholders maintain control, the transaction is tax-free at the corporate and shareholder level.